Mississippi State selects 2015-16 Presidential Scholars class

Students who are Presidential Scholars at Mississippi State University are well-known for their academic skills, creativity and desire to excel in their studies. These young adults are among the nationally elite students who come to MSU for the opportunity to further their goals as students in the Judy and Bobby Shackouls Honors College.

Fifteen freshmen and sophomores from Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, California and Louisiana are new selections for Mississippi State’s most prestigious undergraduate scholarships. These students join 30 others selected in previous years of the program that is part of the highest level of academic achievement at Mississippi State. Incoming freshmen receiving Presidential Scholarships may keep them for as long as eight semesters. The annual awards cover the current cost of university tuition, fees, books and room and board, as well as research and study-abroad expenses. To qualify, the scholars must have a minimum 30 ACT/1330 SAT score, as well as have graduated with a minimum core or overall 3.75 high school grade-point average on a 4.0 scale. Each Presidential Scholar is expected to maintain an overall 3.4 GPA while at Mississippi State.

The 2015-16 Presidential Scholars class includes nine in-state recipients. They are Charles C. Provine of Brandon, a freshman biochemistry/pre-medicine major receiving a Malcolm and Olivia Portera Presidential Scholarship; Nicholas A. “Nick” Ezzell of Laurel, a sophomore physics major receiving a Charles and Pat Lee Presidential Scholarship; Elise M. Moore of Madison, a freshman political science major receiving a Steve and Melody Golding Presidential Scholarship; freshman chemistry major Caroline N. Russell of Madison receiving an L.A. Hurst Presidential Scholarship; Benjamin N. “Ben” Emmich of Olive Branch, a sophomore biological engineering major receiving a Hal and Linda Parker Presidential Scholarship; Karleigh E. W. Kimbrell of Pontotoc, a junior English major receiving an Ottilie Schillig Presidential Scholarship; Shelby C. Adair of Starkville, a freshman biological engineering major receiving a Mickey and Babs Holliman Presidential Scholarship; Kristen R. Lacy of Starkville, a sophomore chemical engineering major receiving a John and Renée Grisham Presidential Scholarship; and Flannery Voges-Haupt of Starkville, a freshman chemistry major receiving a Dean and Turner Wingo Presidential Scholarship.

Joining them are six out-of-state recipients: David H. Sides of Birmingham, Alabama, a freshman business administration/international business major receiving a James and Kay Bryan Presidential Scholarship; Spencer I. Callicott of Bryant, Arkansas, a sophomore computer engineering major receiving a Bobby and Barbara Martin Presidential Scholarship; Ryan M. Stallcup of Huntsville, Alabama, a freshman electrical engineering major receiving a Lila and Hunter Henry Presidential Scholarship; Gentry I. Burkes of Los Angeles, California, a freshman English major receiving a G.V. “Sonny” Montgomery Presidential Scholarship; Sarah E. Darrow of Owens Cross Roads, Alabama, a freshman computer science major receiving a Mickey and Babs Holliman Presidential Scholarship; and Stephanie J. Durr of Shreveport, Louisiana, a freshman political science/pre-law major receiving a G.V. “Sonny” Montgomery Presidential Scholarship.

Selected from more than 500 qualified applicants, the new Presidential Scholars have opportunities to interact with members of the land-grant institution’s extensive research faculty and be part of the college’s Oxford University summer-study program in England, along with other enhanced learning opportunities.

Over the years, a number of scholars have received additional recognitions as national Goldwater, Marshall, Mitchell, Rhodes, Truman and Udall scholars, as well as being selected for a variety of professional internships.

Donors may continue to establish endowments for Presidential Scholarships. A minimum of $250,000 will endow a Presidential Scholarship. To contribute, contact Jack McCarty, executive director of development for the MSU Foundation, at 66.325.9580 or jmccarty@foundation.msstate.edu.

President Mark E. Keenum, center, welcomes the newest class of MSU Presidential Scholars, including (first row, L-R) Sarah Darrow, Elise Moore, Gentry Burkes, Kristen Lacy; (second row) Flannery Voges-Haupt, Shelby Adair, Caroline Russell, Nick Ezzell, Stephanie Durr; (third row) Ben Emmich, Spencer Callicot, David Sides, Charles Provine, and Ryan Stallcup. Karleigh Kimbrell is not pictured.